Welcome BOS members and all interested in birding Western New York and Niagara Peninsula of Ontario!

featured bird photo
Lapland Longspur © Sue Barth

Scoping March

They say March comes in like a lion and out like a lamb, but around here, March exits with a roar as well! Hang in there, the Hamburg Hawkwatch is open for business officially on the 15th. Please stop by and say hello to the volunteer posted at the site for the day. This hawkwatch is covered by volunteers daily from March 15 thru May 15. If you would like to volunteer, please contact Jim Landau (Landaujr@gmail.com). In addition to migrant raptors, the first blackbird and robin flocks are on the move this month.

Waterfowl migration also begins in ernest during March. If you're looking for Snow Geese, head to the eastern side of Niagara County, as well as Orleans and Genesee Counties. This species is far less frequently encountered in Erie County. The ponds and marshes at Iroquois NWR and the Tonawanda WMA are thawing and attracting scores of dapper ducks. Just what the doctor ordered...Pintail, Wigeon, Teal, Shoveler and other puddle ducks are looking smitten in their high breeding plumage.

Red-throated Loons and Red-necked Grebes are also on the move in March and if looking for these birds, check the Lake Ontario overlooks at Ft Niagara SP, Golden Hill SP, Wilson-Tuscarora SP and Wilson Harbor. These birds can also be found in the upper Niagara and at Erie Basin Marina (if ice free). Do yourself a favor and spend some time watching Red-breasted Merganser drakes displaying to the ladies in the aforementioned waterways.

This is a great time of year to put in some time looking for Saw-whets. Spruce and pine groves along the Lake Ontario plain are great places to peek into after a night of light southerly winds. As always with any owls, if you do find one of these magical tiny birds, please keep a respectable distance.

At the end of the month, herons and egrets are returning to their rookeries. Bring your spotting scope to the foot of Sheridan Drive and scan Motor Island from the boat launch to see these newly arrived migrants displaying on their nests.

The Buffalo Ornithological Society (BOS) has something to offer to anyone passionate about birds: from the backyard feeder- watcher, the avid lister or the environmental activist, to the dedicated citizen scientist or the professional ornithologist. Society activities include regular programs, field trips, intensive long-term bird counts, checklist and date guide development, varied research activities, and involvement in local conservation efforts. We invite you to join in the activities of the society!

 BOS Membership  

The Buffalo Ornithological Society, Inc. was established in 1929 to promote the study of the birds of the Niagara Frontier Region. Annual grants are awarded by the BOS to fund member-sponsored avian research projects. We are proud of our extensive scientific research databases, our continuing involvement in environmental and conservation activities that impact birds, and our promotion of the enjoyment of ornithology.

The BOS coverage area includes Western New York and parts of nearby Ontario, Canada. This region is rich in bird life with over 380 species and 25 recognizable subspecies of birds recorded. Explore our site to learn more about where to report and find birds, both regional specialties and rare visitors.

  Hamburg Hawk Watch Season starts soon!

Mar. 15 - May 15. Hamburg Hawk Watch at Lakeside Memorial Park in Hamburg (off Camp Road between Routes 5 & 20). Stop by between 10 AM and 3 PM (weather permitting)!

Dates still needed for coverage:
April: 15
May: 7, 12, 14

If you can help, please contact Jim Landau (716-941-3869 or landaujr@gmail.com).

  Upcoming Field Trips and Events

Several field trips, meetings, and events have recently been added to our calendar. Take a look and be sure to join us at a meeting or on one of our field trips!

Mar 31, 2018

Field Trip - Lake Ontario Plains

Details: (click for more info)

March 31st: Saturday. Lake Ontario Plain Field Trip for early migrants. This popular field trip seeks returning birds, like Killdeer, blackbirds, and Eastern Meadowlark, overwintering birds, like Rough-legged Hawk, Snow Bunting, and Lapland Longspur, and an abundance of waterbirds. We will look for loons, grebes, a variety of ducks and geese, and any goodies that might be around. Seven species of geese have been found on this trip. We will also keep our eyes to the skies in search of migrating raptors, which are often prevalent in spring up by Lake Ontario. Previous trips have recorded Golden Eagle. Come join us and start to get over your spring fever!

Meet at 8 AM at Tops Market in Wright's Corners. This is on the east side of Route 78 at Route 104, north of Lockport.

Leader: Willie D'Anna 751-3637 or dannapotter@roadrunner.com.

Apr 01, 2018

Field Trip - Owl Woods and Braddock Bay

Details: (click for more info)

Leader - Jim Adams
Meet at 8:30a.m. at the parking lot across from the entrance to Owl Woods. See location map link above.

We are very fortunate this year to have a member of Braddock Bay Raptor Research as our guide through Owl Woods. Our main focus here will be the unequivocally endearing Saw-whet Owl. This migratory species is difficult to detect while roosting but with Jim's assistance we hope to see one. Long-eared Owl is also a possibility. We will spend about an hour and a half walking the spruce grove in search of these owls. If the weather permits, we may be able to get a tour of an operating hawk banding station to boot! This 1/2 day trip will have a 20-person limit. Please email Alec Humann (alechumann@msn.com) to reserve your spot! BOS members will have priority.

Apr 08, 2018

April Bird Count

Details: (click for more info)

Sunday, April 8th.

All BOS members should participate in the 81st Annual April Bird Count.

For more information or to volunteer your help, visit our April Count webpage:

April Count Info  

Apr 11, 2018

Meeting - Tennessee Habitat Restoration Follow-up

Details: (click for more info)

April 11th: Wed. BOS Meeting in the Cummings Room of the Buffalo Museum of Science at 7:00 PM.

Wayne Schacher: Follow up and expansion from last April’s presentation Tennessee Habitat Restoration.

Apr 22, 2018

Field Trip - Braddock Bay Hawkwatch

Details: (click for more info)

Sunday, April 22

Meet at 9:30 AM in the parking lot at Braddock Bay State Park, 199 E Manitou Road, 14468.

David Gordon leads this joint trip with the RBA (Rochester Birding Association).

Weather permitting, we will indulge in the spectacle of spring hawk migration from the hawkwatch platform. The bay should also have good numbers of waterfowl and the nearby woods may hold new arrival passerines. If owls are present, a short trip to Owl Woods will also enliven the day!

This is a full day trip so bring drinks, lunch, snacks, sunscreen and a chair (for hawk watching). Bathrooms are available at the park. Be aware that a lake breeze can develop this time of year which is a cool/cold breeze out of the north compliments of Lake Ontario. Dress appropriately.

Leader David Gordon (dgordonphoto@yahoo.com)

Apr 29, 2018

Field Trip - Genesee County Park Doug's Way

Details: (click for more info)

Meet at 8am at the Save-A-Lot parking lot at 45 Ellicott St., Batavia, NY (corner of Ellicott and Jackson Streets).

Today's adventure will begin on Old Creek Road just south of the City of Batavia. This area has habitat for American Woodcock, Wilson's Snipe and American Bittern. We will also be looking for newly arrived Cliff Swallows and early shorebirds, such as yellowlegs.
We will then continue on to Genesee County Park. We will make several stops along the way to scan fields for Lapland Longspur, American Pipit and Horned Lark. At the county park, we will walk gravel roads and a few easy trails as we look for newly arrived migrant passerines, waterfowl and hopefully see and hear Common Raven.
There are restrooms at the county park and Doug said he would make sure they are opened for us. How very thoughtful! This will be a half day trip. Bring a lunch to enjoy after our morning birding outing and we can recap the highlights of the day.

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